Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Weekend at the Farm


I'm back from our holiday weekend farm escape! As always, and I'm sure many know the feeling, greeted by a mountain of work on my desk. Aside from work-work, I've also got a bit of fun-work to prepare for...nothing earth-shaking but I'm excited nonetheless :) If all goes well, I hope to share it with all of you soon!


Meanwhile, I hope this bunch of photos from our weekend will keep everyone entertained. This isn't a huge farm with cows and pigs and crops and such -- just some chicken and their eggs, a pool, trees and grass and real birds that chirp in the morning...you know, that of which I am so sadly starved in the city.


The house is done in old Filipino style. It was lovingly put together by my mom-in-law, using choice bits from old, ancestral homes in the north (from Ilocos) that were either falling apart or being torn down. A door from here, a table from there. I like to think she saved these pieces about to be swallowed up by time, and they've now found a new home with new people to love them.


We were a big group of family and friends so there was a lot of laughter and good times. Swimming, poker, siesta, chatting. There was also a lot of food! Jollof rice and a spicy okra stew from a friend who grew up in Nigeria, grilled fish caught by her husband, barbecued burgers and sausages with all the fixings, fish tacos (for Good Friday!) with homemade guacamole and salsa (and these pickled jalapenos!), and our Greek-themed dinner with prawns (in garlic, lemon, parsely, and feta - recipe from Tessa Kiros) and crispy fried sardines (a Donna Hay recipe! I used fresh tawilis -- a freshwater sardine found only in the Philippines!), Greek salad and vegetable skewers, and a bunch of mezze (the olives, hummus, melitzanosalata, labneh, pita). We also had mum-in-law's callos a la Madrilena and steamed mussels.

Not all in one meal people.


Sigh...I wish all weekends could be like this! I hope you all had a fantastic Easter, if you celebrate it, or a wonderful weekend with people you love! :)

40 comments:

glamah16 said...

When I saw Jollof RiceI said 'Wait a minute"!And then I saw the Nigerian connection. What a beautiful farm and idyllic weekend.

Manggy said...

Welcome back Joey! I see you've made a "mezze" back there (oh, are we all tired of that pun?)!

I spent most of my Easter asleep to compensate for jetlag, haha :)

christine said...

It's really such a pretty house! And the food sounds lovely, as expected. :) Sigh, now it's back to reality. It was nice to not have a phone (dead batter)/computer/watch(batt also went kaput can you believe) for 5 days.

princess_dyanie said...

Happy Easter Joey! :) Sarap mag relax :)

Rasa Malaysia said...

That's the nicest farm pictures I have seen...I guess the notion of farms in Malaysia are like stinky, pigs, cows, etc. LOL.

Pille said...

How very beautiful and idyllic!!

Midge said...

Hi, Joey; happy Easter! That is such a pretty house and the photographs were superb. Glad to hear you had a restful Holy Week.

mtan said...

I first thought you went to the Farm in San Benito!!! Raw food and no meat treat for easter.
Phew! Thank goodness the rest of the post showed otherwise. Beautiful home, and the food looks great!

Barbara said...

Looks like a wonderful place to spend the weekend Joey.

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

That's a beautiful and peaceful place! You sure eat well there!

Cheers,

Rosa

ChichaJo said...

Hi Glamah16! Yes! I looove her Jollof Rice :) It was really a lovely weekend…

Thanks Manggy! You are one funny guy huh? ;) Glad to have you back!

Hey Nens! I really like cozy-ing up there :) I always get to relax! Yes, it was so great to be without technology for a while…although I did still have my mobile and watch :) Back to reality…criminy.

Hi Princess Dyanie! Thanks! Hope you had a happy Easter too! :)

Hi Bee! It’s really just a small egg farm with my mom-in-law’s “rest house” attached :) We’ve got those typical farms here too…and although stinky, any farm with pigs is A-OK with me! :)

Hi Pille! It really was! It’s not fancy but such a relaxing place :)

Hi Midge! Hope you had a good weekend as well! :) I’m practicing with my new camera :)

Hi M! Um, no. Hahaha! Hope you had a great Easter!

Hi Barbara! It was a really good weekend – lots of relaxing :)

Hi Rosa! Thanks! :) It was a special occasion so we all pitched in for some great meals!

katrina said...

I'm loving that house! The furniture is eclectic yet still feels Pinoy, and best of all has some funky touches thrown in -- that painted sawali ceiling is a FAB idea (which I want to steal someday), and the brightly-painted iron chairs are so cute!

My bro-in-law does all the cooking when we're at our Tag house, and he does an amazing job. But how much more scrumptious to have everyone chip in their own specialties! I've never had Nigerian food, what's it like? African cuisine is an almost completely unexplored territory for me.

Veron said...

Those are wonderful pics joey! I especially love that pattern on that ceiling . The house is beautiful with a tasteful touch of things from the past.

Stella (Sweet Temptations) said...

Wow, looks like you had a blast, lucky you!
Happy belated Easter Joey:)

oggi said...

What a beautiful house! I like your photos too, specially the kamias.

And we also had fish tacos on Good Friday. My husband was confused when I heated corn tortillas and served with the fish.:)

Suzana said...

Lovely photos, Joey! It must have been a really nice weekend.

ChichaJo said...

Hi Katrina! There is always some cute photo-op in all its nooks and crannies :) She has these retro, old-school Pinoy glass plates and glasses that I'm in love with! The Nigerian food my friend makes is great...and I haven't even tried all of it! The ones she's made me try seem to me like forerunners to what we now know to be New Orleans type food -- the jollof rice and okra stew remind me a bit of jambalaya and gumbo :) But better (jollof is simpler than jambalaya and spah-ay-cier! i love it!) :) For me at least :)

Hi Veron! Thanks! I love that ceiling...it's a beautiful pattern in its entirety :)

Hi Stella! Same to you! I did :) Now it's back to the grind!

Hi Oggi! What a nice coincidence! :) You should have seen the kamias...the tree trunk was bursting with them!

Hi Suzana! It was :) Thank you!

the husband said...

Fantastic shots! And what a beautiful house! I do hope to have a place like that for when I grow old and retire. Really beautiful! Have a nice day!

JMom said...

Sounds like a heavenly weekend! Love the house, but the food you described is to die for :D

Kelly-Jane said...

Such a pretty house, and so many lovely things - and food too ;)

MyKitchenInHalfCups said...

Joey that sounds like a weekend to beat them all. The house looks incredible, I love that it was gathered piece by piece and not done by a decorator. It's grand to have history with each piece.

rowena said...

That is too cool...so cool in fact that I often long for the days when my grandma had her little "farm" with the chickens and the ducks and the geese and all of those wonderful smells coming from the kitchen.

Did you say okra stew? Grrrr...I can't seem to get the little buggers to sprout. We are crazy for okra!

Eileen said...

What a lovely home! I could cook in that kitchen!! :)

Eileen (passions to pastry)
www.livingtastefully.com

ChichaJo said...

Hi the Husband! Thank you! :) I would also love to retire to a lovely place like this :)

Hi Jmom! It was great :) And I love planning the menu with my friends :)

Hi Kelly-jane! Just the things for a good weekend away :)

Hi Tanna! I agree...I love the way it was put together...gosh, if those things could speak! The tales I'm sure they could tell :)

Hi Rowena! I am such a city-kid that if you put me in even the smallest bit of nature I start getting strry-eyed :) I, on the other hand, cannot say that okra is a favorite...EXCEPT for this dish! I swear I can't get enough!

Hi Eileen! I love cooking there :)

Cenk said...

Lovely pictures. I can't wait to hear more about your secret project!

Nina's Kitchen (Nina Timm) said...

Wow, How blessed you are.....

LyB said...

You seem to have had a lovely weekend! That house is absolutely gorgeous, such a wonderful mix of cherished things. Thanks for sharing the photos!

maybahay said...

i love your photo collage. you do have a special eye for beautiful things.
sounds like you had an idyllic Easter weekend.

Anonymous said...

HOw do you make salsa?

ChichaJo said...

Hi Cenk! Thanks! :) As much as I'd like to share it all with you, we still have to wait a couple of months :)

Hi Nina! I believe I am and I'm very thankful for all life's blessings :)

Hi Lyb! Glad you enjoyed the pictures and much as I enjoyed sharing them :)

Hi Maybahay! It was both and fun and restful weekend...thanks! :)

Hi Anonymous! I usually just make a very fresh-type salsa: just some chopped onions, chopped tomatoes, cilantro, a little salt and pepper, maybe a bit of red wine vinegar, and toss everything together. For this one here though, I did the same but gave everything a whiz in the food processor and added chipotle Tabasco sauce :)

Jen Tan said...

Joey!!! What a beautiful vacation house...it must have been uber relaxing and fun. The pictures look great..thank you for sharing you wonderful weekend =)

Jen Tan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
White On Rice Couple said...

Welcome back! And thanks for sharing this wonderful farm! I especially love the okra stew! Sounds delish!

ChichaJo said...

Hi Jen! It was really relaxing and fun...and a lovely house albeit not too far from the city...far enough to feel "away from it all" ;)

Hi White on Rice Couple! I'm glad you enjoyed the post! The okra stew is delicious...I'm always bugging my friend for some :)

santos. said...

what a beautiful house. when i go to our farm, it's red clay, a wood shack, a lot of mosquitoes, heat, and a mean dog by the runner beans. (laughing) lucky, lucky you!

ChichaJo said...

Hi Santos! Heehee :) Well, when the wind blows a certain way...just imagine all those chickens! Phew! ;) That when the tanduay comes in handy ;) But yes, it's a great place to kick back and put your mind on slo-mo :)

Bordeaux said...

What a lovely house and setting for a weekend getaway. Must have been hard returning to the city?

ChichaJo said...

Hi Bordeaux! It's always hard returning to the city (and to work!) and relaxing weekend's like these...although I must say, I love my city, pollution, heat, and all! :)

jo said...

what a beautiful house to come home to

ChichaJo said...

Hi Jo! It is...it's really lovely to escape there on the weekends :)